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Stitching Houses in Needlepoint

Rendering houses in needlepoint can be both fun and frustrating. It is fun because the geometric shapes of needlepoint and houses go together. It is frustrating because you always feel as if you do not have the right stitch to make bricks, or clapboards or roofs. You want texture but how do you achieve it?

Here as some easy stitches which are perfect for houses. I have organized them by types of building materials for easy reference.


The classic stitch for bricks is Cashmere. The rectangular shape mimics the shape of bricks perfectly and, like bricks you can make them into patterns. Figure 1 shows Cashmere set in a typical pattern for walls. But for walkways and patios you might want a different pattern, such as the block pattern made up of sets of two Cashmere Stitches which is figure 2.
stitch diagram for needlepoint bricks - cashmere
Figure 1: Cashmere Brick
stitch diagram for needlepoint brick pathways - cashmere
Figure 2: Cashmere Blocks


Wood siding, traditionally called clapboard is best using Diagonal Gobelin. You can make this stitch any width, so that a narrow width,figure 3, us perfect for clapboards, a wider width might make a good log for a log house. Making this stitch in vertical lines looks like the vertical siding on many newer houses, figure 4.
Stitch diagram for horizontal clapboards in needlepoint - gobelin
Figure 3: Diagonal Gobelin
Stitch diagram for vertical clapboards in needlepoint - gobelin
Figure 4: Vertical Diagonal Gobelin


Stucco is harder because from far away it has little texture. Instead of Basketweave, why not add a bit of texture with Dotted Swiss, figure 5. This stitch is made like Basketweave, in diagonal rows, but cross every other stitch in every fourth row. The crossed stitch catch the light a little differently and add texture.
Stitch diagram for stucco in needlepoint - dotted swiss
Figure 5: Reverse Dotted Swiss


Shingles, whether on roofs or siding, are probably the most challenging part of a house to stitch, But there is a great stitch for this, Shingle, figure 6. Because some of the stitches drop down from the main line of stitches, it defines smaller units of the stitch.
Needlepoint stitch diagram for shingle stitch, stitch for making roofs
Figure 6: Shingle

If you have a Victorian house, you mat have shingle in a decorative wave pattern, looking like clamshells. For these kind of shingles use this Bargello pattern.

Windows and Frames

Windows are another challenge, if you stitch them solidly, they look too heavy. A perfect solution is T Stitch, Figure 7, in a soft metallic or a single ply of silk or floss. This is light enough to make the windows look realistic, and the metallic gives a glow like glass. I like Kreinik in pale yellow (9100) for lit windows and dark gray (010HL) for unlit ones.
Needlepoint stitch diagram for T Stitch to make glass n windows
Figure 7: T Stitch

If you do this with your windows and make the frame in Continental, you will be surprised by how great they look.

Wider frames can use Diagonal Gobelin, if you have not used it for siding.

With these few stitches, you can make just about any sort of house from a humble cottage to a mansion.

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"Copyright 2007, Janet M. Perry. To learn about Janet's books, ebooks, stitch guides and projects, visit her website at"

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